Gender Discrimination: Higher mortality for girls as compared to boys in India – UNICEF

Gender discrimination is not new to India. A recent report of United Nations revealed that Indian parents avoid treatment of newborn girls as against newborn boys. As a result the newborn dies within a month of their birth. According to the report released by UNICEF, India is the only big country in the world to have a higher mortality for girls as compared to boys, it said and added girls are biologically stronger but socially vulnerable in India. The number of newborn deaths in the country was one of the highest in the world. Six lakh newborns die in India within 28 days of their birth every year.

The report observed that though the mortality rate has decreased during 1990 to 2015, discrimination between boys and girls has not changed. Indian representative of UNICEF, Yasmin Ali Haq said unfortunately girls are socially vulnerable. She further says, discrimination is done towards fair sex since ages. Gupta says that parents don’t take their daughters for treatment because they don’t want to take leave from work and their salary is deducted. While in case of sons they make all efforts for their treatment.

In India parents prefer sons because they help in performing religious rites. Daughters are considered a burden in the society as they have to be given dowry. Though infant mortality in the country has declined considerably, the number of newborns dying each year remains unacceptably high. The progress has been inequitable for girls, with under-five mortality rate for girls being at 41 per 1,000 as against 37 per 1000 for boys.

Source: The Siasat Daily

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